Inside the World of a Mean Girl

Mean Girl
Why the world’s best female fighter loves to be hated.
By: Kelefa Sanneh, The New Yorker
"When Ronda Rousey is training for a fight, she spends a week eating nothing but salty food. She wants to get bloated, so that when she eliminates salt from her diet, in the final days, her body expels all the fluid it can find. After a couple of steam baths, what remains of her weighs almost exactly a hundred and thirty-five pounds, the limit for the women’s bantamweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. In the sport once known as cage fighting and now known as mixed martial arts, the U.F.C. is the dominant company, and she has become its dominant personality, despite the fact that not long ago its president was promising never to promote a fight between women. Rousey is a former judo champion, and she won her first eight M.M.A. fights with a move known in judo as juji gatame, which can be painful to contemplate, let alone receive: it is a type of arm bar designed to hyperextend an opponent’s elbow, stretching ligaments, tearing the articular capsule, and even grinding away the bone if the opponent doesn’t concede quickly enough. Outside the cage, Rousey is genial but unapologetic about her capacity to inflict harm. When, recently, she submitted to a brief interview on 'American Idol,' Ryan Seacrest jokingly flinched as she greeted him. 'I don’t fight for free,' she said. 'Don’t worry.'”

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Striker Jessica Penne prepares to take on hard-charging strawweight Jessica Penne with Team Pettis coaches before taking the Octagon in an all-new episode of The Ultimate Fighter!
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Aisling Daly works with Team Pettis coaches on a game plan before she faces Jessica Penne in an all-new episode of The Ultimate Fighter. Daly watches film of her bout versus Magana, then works of her elbows with coach Cushman.
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Aisling Daly, who defeated Angela Mangana by TKO, looks to continue her success when she takes on teammate Jessica Penne in a new episode of The Ultimate Fighter. Check out the Dublin natives week of practice leading up to her bout!
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Check in with Team Pettis member Jessica Penne before her quarterfinals bout against Aisling Daly on an all-new episode of The Ultimate Fighter. Penne, who defeated Lisa Ellis in episode three, works on her right hand with coach Scott Cushman.
2014-11-26